For new and innovative centers, we provide the full range of advice and expertise from concept to opening…and beyond.
For existing centers, we can provide the expertise to turn money losers into winners.
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Over the course of more than twenty years, the team at Healthplex Associates has developed the industry’s leading group of experts and resources to provide support for any aspect of medical fitness. Whether it’s determining the feasibility of a new center, planning, equipping, operating or improving the operations of an existing center, HPA has the answers. Just click the SOLUTIONS tab to learn more!
Healthplex® Associates’ unique approach to strategic planning emphasizes education. We work with our clients to develop a strategic plan that “fits” their organization, rather than force a template that comes from some other project. With Healthplex® Associates, every center, every project is a study of one.
HPA sees its mission as not just developing a fitness organization, but also adapting a fitness organization to a healthcare delivery system. After all, we too, are hospital and health system people.
Our approach to project planning is designed to minimize project risk and financial exposure to the client. This is accomplished through the completion of a product called a Feasibility Study. One of the key questions at this early stage is whether or not there is enough unmet demand to support a Healthplex. The extent of this demand will dictate the probable size, major components and general profitability of the proposed center. The cost of this study is very modest and, in the case of adverse findings, the client may elect not to proceed further in the project planning. While there are many components of a plan for a new wellness center, the principal categories include the final site selection and procurement, final project sizing, financial feasibility analysis, establishment of protocols for integration with client medical programs, medical component space planning, marketing and construction planning. Included in the Feasibility Study is the operations business plan which precisely defines the fitness component, identifies its goals, and serves as its blue print. The basic components include accurate financial projections by a team that knows the business. This helps allocate resources properly, prepare for unforeseen complications, and to make good business decisions.
Elements of a typical Feasibility Study include:
- Fit with hospital strategic plan, mission and organization
- Description of the fitness club (concept, size, location, etc.)
- Fitness competition analysis
- Membership demand by type
- Year-to-year membership growth
- Site description
- Project sizing
- Establishment of protocols for integration with client medical programs
- Capital equipment and supply analysis
- Breakeven analysis
- 5year pro-forma income projections (profit & loss statements)
- Project cost assumptions
- Recommendations and action plan
The basic model for expanding the continuum of care, particularly in today’s healthcare reimbursement environment, is to transition from traditional healthcare services such as rehabilitation, to a safe, supervised and self-managed fitness program. Examples of uniquely integrated programs that should be considered include the following:
- Arthritis programs including warm-water aquatics and pediatric arthritis
- Cancer Rehabilitation and Conditioning
- Pulmonary Rehabilitation and Conditioning
- Weight Loss and Weight Management
- Women’s Health Services including Pre and Post Natal Exercise
- Exercise for the Physically Disabled and programs for the continuation of exercise after Physical or Occupational Therapy
- Diabetic Exercise
- Senior Health and Fitness
- Cardiac Rehabilitation Phases II and III
- Alternative medicine
- This is merely a partial list of the programs that Healthplex Associates has actually developed and implemented in its centers.
The Clinical Services Business Plan compliments the Feasibility Study by identifying clinical opportunities in the Healthplex, projecting clinical service volume, revenue and market share growth for services related to the fitness component (Rehabilitation, Cardiac Rehab, etc.)
The following analysis is included:
- Volume and growth projections for each clinical service. Growth rates for each service are derived by examining their current market share, the competitive environment in the primary service area, and HPA’s experience in the level of growth possible in a clinically integrated environment such as the Healthplex.
- Projected incremental clinical profit for each clinical service. The full financial impact that accrues to the hospital/health system as a result of building and operating the Healthplex is demonstrated when the financial performance of the retail, medically based fitness center and the clinical treatment services are combined.
- Estimated square footage for each Center of Excellence. These preliminary and minimum square footage estimates will allow the project to proceed to the development stage and will assist in gaining a better understanding of construction costs and designing the layout and floor plan of the Healthplex facility.
- Identification of other treatment or ancillary support services to meet the strategic goals of the Hospital for the Healthplex campus.
- Educational and outreach programs that would complement the clinical mix at the Healthplex.
It´s important to remember that the focus of wellness center marketing is reaching and motivating people. Marketing a wellness center is quite different from marketing a hospital. Hospital marketing is aimed at creating an image; getting people to have confidence that if they need health care, the advertising hospital is a great place to seek it. A wellness center that uses this “passive” approach is bound to fail. Retail marketing requires some spur, a “call to action” that motivates people to actively seek the product or service. HPA knows wellness center marketing techniques and we have developed the expertise to design programs that work.
Design Marketing Strategies with Your Target Market in Mind
A target market is people – people with common characteristics that set them apart as a group. Knowing as much as possible about the unique wants, needs and type of people in the market makes it possible to more precisely develop an effective strategy.
HPA can help with identifying a target market to make strategies for designing, pricing, distributing, promoting, positioning, and improving your club and its services easier, more effective, and less costly.
HPA’s Customer Survey for Medical Fitness Centers is specifically designed to identify issues and strategies that are “actionable” for our clients. Our unique survey tool, the first designed specifically for hospital-affiliated medical fitness centers, helps:
- Achieve the mission to improve community health status
- Maintain and improve the fitness center´s operational and service quality
To do that, management must understand what their members want and expect from the facility.
HPA’s data base of over 13,000 respondents offers benchmark data that is critical to understanding and interpreting what center members are saying. Without our national standards, any survey is just raw data.
Easy, Inexpensive, Accurate and Customizable!
HPA’s core questions provide a comprehensive overview of operations and member perceptions. By allowing the capacity to easily add customize questions for particular needs we have the perfect survey for every client. This approach provides great flexibility and still keeps the cost low. HPA even guides the interpretation of the data from the survey to assure that a plan for improvements is created with confidence.
Most importantly, the data generated by the survey are meaningful because they’re contextual. As Healthplex® Associates continues to build a database of information from medical fitness centers nationwide, data are analyzed in comparison to other medical fitness centers, rather than commercial centers with differing missions.
In many cases, clients who are currently operating a medical wellness center may be seeking ways to improve operations, marketing, clinical integration and a host of other management functions. Healthplex Associates has a full team of experts with backgrounds in all of the functional aspects of wellness center management.
This means that we can provide support and advice for every area of the operating departments.
Many Hospitals find that the earnings from their hospital-affiliated medical fitness center have fallen short of expectations, or that the operation is not fulfilling its intended mission of service. Poor membership retention, difficulty attracting new members, and an inability to increase member revenue are just a few of the symptoms of a center that needs help. Fortunately, there is an answer.
Healthplex® Associates’ Operational and Strategic Assessment for Medical Fitness Centers evaluates all aspects of a center’s operation – marketing, sales, day-to-day functions, reporting systems and output, and the competition. The result: HPA provides clear, actionable and practical recommendations supported by a detailed plan to meet our client’s bottom line. At a minimum, we will examine:
- Clinical programming – is the scope and extent of clinical programming meeting the needs of the hospital and its patients, are clinical revenue opportunities being maximized? Is there an effective system in place to encourage patients to use the wellness center and are statistical reports tracking this?
- Staffing, salary, and wage structure – are incentives being used effectively? Is there a proper pay-for-performance program?
- Retail operations (including equipment and equipment leasing) – are you optimizing your resources? Are non-clinical programs (baby-sitting, food services, etc.) adding value?
- Fee structures – are fees fair and reasonable? Are fees consistent with the product and the market?
- Do customer service levels, sales techniques, and operating policies and procedures support the right kind of operation?
In conjunction with an independent, third party demographic research firm, Healthplex® Associates can provide a comprehensive assessment to guide the development of a proposed center or the efforts of an existing one. Our proven market research techniques utilize state-of-the-art scientific methodology, taking the guesswork out of the process.
Building a feasibility analysis for a proposed center includes tailoring the concept to the unique demographics of a specific market and that individual site. The investment in a proposed center cannot be protected and nurtured by an “off-the-shelf” consulting product based on a program that was developed for some other facility.
Sometimes, questions arise that are outside the purview of the demand model. In the case of unique demand issues, a client may benefit from local research regarding consumer intent. In other cases, questions about pricing or the value of certain features may indicate the need for custom research. Our team has conducted hundreds of custom studies using a variety of techniques, from focus groups to phone research to custom surveys.
There are many examples of health care organizations who have purchased and/or built a fitness club and are unhappy with the club’s physical characteristics. Healthplex® Associates specializes in helping those organizations renovate these facilities by acting as an experienced end-user, so that the dual concepts of medical integration and world class fitness facilities can be achieved. In some cases, it may not be physically possible to do the remodeling and it then becomes necessary to rebuild at a nearby site. In either case, Healthplex Associates has the team to guide the process and assure success.
Healthplex® Associates takes a truly different approach to management. Most healthcare systems which undertake a project of this nature can benefit from our support in designing the operation so that it fits the mission they want to provide. Many hospitals will want to manage and control their new center. This is understandable. However, operating a retail fitness enterprise is typically outside their comfort zone and management expertise. Often by the time the organization realizes that fact, they are deeply in unavoidable debt and service problems.
Healthplex® Associates has a proven, award-winning team that not only manages the fitness operation profitably, but, even more importantly, manages the center with the sensitivity and understanding required to assure that fitness and healthcare are truly integrated.
The principals of our firm have helped achieve groundbreaking innovations, and are constantly developing new ideas to refine and improve the “Caring for Health” model.
Experience has shown that employing an experienced “end-user” can provide high quality with prudent cost management. The construction of a wellness facility is very different from most other hospital construction projects. Ultimately, the facility must support the specialized needs of all tenants, but within the square foot and price constraints that support sustainable business plans. Healthplex Associates understands these special requirements.
The construction management oversight by Healthplex Associates includes the following elements:
- Preliminary and final design
- Site design
- Architectural development
- Vendor selection
- Contract process
- Interior design elements
Following construction, we are poised to serve the needs of our members. Healthplex® Associates works closely with hospital officials to manage a successful grand opening event, designed to launch the new service line and provide momentum. This important activity is guaranteed to stimulate additional demand among the general public.
The Healthplex is a unique combination of special medical services with a successful fitness center. Since the facilities are architecturally integrated, a Healthplex allows for many therapy milieus to be expanded within the fitness club.
It is precisely the integration between fitness and clinical/medical services that is the foundation of the Healthplex concept. The management, fitness and clinical staff from our current Healthplex facilities meet regularly to develop new and better ways to integrate services. Each facility offers unique programs and services, which are based on the healthcare needs of the community and the needs of our healthcare partners. At the foundation of what makes Healthplex different is our emphasis on designing fitness programs based on a clinical assessment of a client and the needs uncovered in that assessment. Healthplex has pioneered integrative services and we have moved from the fragmented, unrelated wellness offerings to a truly integrated system of health enhancement bringing together programs, services and expertise in medically based fitness and well-care. Our basic model, particularly in today’s healthcare reimbursement environment, is to transition from traditional healthcare services such as rehabilitation, to a safe, supervised and self-managed fitness program.